The Internet has rekindled an age old activity that everybody used to love and that is playing cards. Filipinos of all ages have been playing online card games since the time when the first online solitaire applications began appearing on the internet, and now with the advent of social networking and legitimate gambling portals, the population of Filipino online players for card games has ballooned into a number that is somewhat in need of attention.
Due to this favorable uptake and very warm reception to online card playing, new online
variants began to show up that are more catered to the Asian market. One of this is Big Two, a very popular card game in South East Asia that requires the same set of skills that made Poker exciting and fun to play with, but only with a different set of gameplay mechanics.
Big Two is a card game of chance as well as of skill; it is also a card game of cunning and of
patience. It is a strategy game wherein good players know in advance their opponent’s moves based on the cards that they hold in their hands and the cards that are already on the table. Even dealt with a bad hand, a good player can win if they play their cards right and most of all even with a losing hand you can still earn chips or money when using the right strategy.
Big 2 can be characterized as a Shedding card game with the main goal of being the
first to lose all his or her cards in order to win. Some basic mechanics can be found here and here but advanced playing strategies are hard to come by. This article tries to rectify that by giving new insight into Big Two particularly strategies used by the Filipino version of Big Two which is Pusoy Dos.
Big Two is locally called Pusoy Dos (Poker Two when literally translated) in the Philippines
and it is a card game that has been played in the Philippines in every place and every occasion imaginable. Pusoy Dos has been around for more than three decades already and it is still is gaining popularity even with the encroachment of traditional western Poker versions like Texas Hold Em and Five Card Stud.
This is due primarily to the ease of learning the game for novices and of the strategic
complexity it affords to advanced players who seek such brainy thrills.
In Filipino style Big Two, strategy is at the heart of any successful card player. When a good Pusoy Dos player is dealt a weak hand they see this as a chance to practice sound card techniques rather than consider it as a sign of bad luck.
For example, when a player does not have five card combinations or any card combination
at all but has a lot of mid to high single cards (even without stopper cards like the big two cards but a number of aces and single cards that range from ten to king of high suit) then that player can play a game of singles.
The strategy is quite simple; you draw out the highest cards of your opponent/s early on
in the game so that your opponent/s will not have the opportunity to use those cards when they need them the most. And then when you see the opportunity you demolish them piece by piece by throwing only single cards, always having a card that can beat theirs in every turn at the ready.
Another strategy good Pusoy Dos players employ is the Endurance Game. An endurance game is a play wherein you let the other players dictate the pace of the game until you tire them out until having observed or deduced that your opponents do not have any more cards that can challenge yours then you use a stopper card or a high card combination to make your move and control the game until the end.
The endurance game strategy is useful when you have a lot of card variations (you can play
a single game or a lot of card combinations) and one or more stopper cards (Big Two’s) or high pairs - in standard poker this might be considered as an Ace in the hole. The endurance game strategy also revolves around the concept of trying to stick the game within the pace of your cards, you do not try to finish early – you do not try to finish fast.
You may not always dictate what cards need to be thrown at the table but most of the time
you have cards available to challenge them if needed until you wear them out and then you go for the kill.